When is the time right?
It's a question which I seem to ask all the time as a parent. When is the right time to wean? when is the right time to leave my baby? The list goes on and on and it never seems to end.
During the newborn stage, I felt really confident with the answers to this question. I knew the right time to start a routine and start weaning and so on, but in the toddler world, I doubt myself a little. There seem to be so many more factors to consider. When you have newborn, you go with what feels right for you as a parent and if your child appears ready, but with a toddler, you have to consider their current mood swings, abilities and personality.
Lily is a very independent little soul. She gets annoyed very quickly if you try to help her before she asks for help and will sometimes want to do things which to me, seem a bit too old or advanced for her. I guess that's where my doubt begins. To me, if I don't feel she's ready for it, I want to stop her doing it, but her strong personality leads her to believe otherwise. Do I stop her as a parent, or allow her to try with supervision and guidance and let her follow through with her determination and learn from the experience?
I've had to deal with a lot of parents who disagree with my parenting and it leads to more doubt on my behalf. I have the usual "she's too independent for her own good" and "oh I wouldn't let mine do that". Surely if I feel my child can cope with it then it's okay? I had one person accuse me of child labour after I said I get my daughter to help tidy her toys up at the end of the day. I thought I was teaching her a sense of 1). pride in your home (keeping it clean and tidy) and 2) giving her some responsibility.
This week as I was picking Lily up from her nursery, her teachers and I talked about how frustrated she gets with other children not being able to do the things she can do. It's hard to explain to her that not everyone can do the same things she can, but she just doesn't get it. Her teachers have said how now is the right time to move her up to the next class with older children, but that there isn't enough space yet in the class. It flips the situation, this time, she is really ready but has an obstacle...We just can't win!
We've now moved on to what feels like the latest challenge for this topic, going to bed WITHOUT pull-ups on. First night we've had a lot of success, but I know at some point there will be an accident, but when your child says "I don't want Pull-ups anymore", I guess you just have to go with it.